February 7, 2016

Expect 11 percent increase in sewer rates

Danedri Thompson
Gardner residents can expect to pay approximately $60 more per year in sewer rates next year.
Laura Gourley, city finance director, told council members scheduled rate increases as well as increases related to the school bond issue and increases related to a joint sewer project with the city of Edgerton will result in an 11 percent rate hike in 2013.
The following year, Gourley estimates rates will need to increase another 7 percent.
Council members authorized a resolution to request a  loan from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to finance the $9 million sewer expansion at Edgerton’s plant. The plant will reduce sewer capacity usage at other Gardner plants eventually saving residents money, Gourley said.
Preliminary estimates suggest the council will need to increase sewer rates 11 percent in 2013, 7 percent in 2014, and then 5 percent in both 2015 and 2016. By 2017, Gourley anticipates a 0 percent increase for Gardner sewer users.
Without expanding Edgerton’s plant, she said city officials anticipated needing to add capacity or build a new facility in Gardner. Those plans would require an 11 percent increase this year, and then 5 percent increases each year in 2014, 2015, and 2016 and beyond.
Gourley said she hesitates to project much further in the future, because much can change between now and then.
“You will be saving money in five years,” she told the council.


  1. Judith Rogers says:

    “You will be saving money in five years” – you better put that promise in stone and on your scorecard. Are they going to be giving me a rebate for the increased costs from 2012 to 2017?

    That debt taken on for the school bond should have been covered by ALL families within the school district and not just by Gardner residents. We should never have been involved in that deal with Edgerton which puts Gardner citizens further in debt. Why can’t Gourley be forthcoming and tell the citizens what the city’s present debt level is??? Why is she wanting citizens to wait until August to find our what our debt is??? Show us a chart as to how the city debt has escalated within the past 10 years. They now are increasing your utility rates to cover their borrowing habits instead of just hitting you with mill levy increases on your property tax bill and they probably will be doing that too this year.

    The shuffling of the money and the propaganda could not be worse and we certainly see it at the Gardner city and the USD 231 Scool Dist. here in our backyard. Go to http://www.bizjournals.com/wichita/morning_call/2012/05/city-of-wichita-has-14-million.html?ana=e_wich_rdup&s=newsletter&ed=2012-05-09 and you will find out how Wichita and I am sure city after city shuffling the money while the costs continue to rise and rise and rise for citizens across the state of Kansas. And Brownback is trying like hell and will probably suceed with the help of the slimy legislators in giving the citizens a huge tax increase while taking care of his special interest business entities along with the decadent farm subsidy program here in Kansas. The politicians and bureaucrats work well with the thieves and they get more arrogant by the day and more prolific with their propaganda and rhetoric.

    When I hear this bull hockey again coming from my city government, I know I am going to be using my gas mask even more because of the stench in the air.

  2. This is getting crazy– I mean Gardner already pays FOUR TIMES what other cities pay for sewage and water and its increasing again? We’ve seen the same with electricity– jeez… I used to think Gardner was affordable. Then you look at your utility bills back through the years and realize how much more it costs to live here now.

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